Crossword Puzzle Maker

Use the form below to generate your own crossword puzzle.

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Crossword Advanced Options

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Crossword Preview

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Welcome to our Crossword Puzzle Maker! Whether you’re a teacher looking for crossword puzzles to give to your students, or a logophile who wants to create a custom crossword for a special occasion, our tool can help you easily generate the perfect puzzle.

How to Use the Crossword Puzzle Maker

  1. Title your puzzle. Enter your puzzle title into the ‘title’ text box.
  2. Select a preset of words, or enter your own puzzle words and clues. When creating your puzzle, you can either use one of our existing sets of words, or enter your own words and clues. If you’d like to use an existing preset, the Word Finder has options including holiday-themed sets, geographic locations, and historical crosswords. If you prefer to create your own custom puzzle, enter your words and their clues into the text box manually. Each word should start on its own line, and should be followed by a comma and then the clue for that word. For instance, if I’d like to include the word ‘January’ with the clue ‘resolution month,’ I would type, “January, Resolution month.”
  3. If not all of your words can be added to the crossword, try to rework them. Occasionally, a word will not be able to be added to the crossword because it only contains letters not featured elsewhere in the puzzle. This is very rare, but if it happens to you, try adding another word which includes some of these letters, or delete the word entirely. Keep in mind that the more words you include in your puzzle, the less likely it is that a word will not be able to be incorporated.
  4. Select your font. Choose which font you prefer for your clues and title.
  5. Decide if you’d like to hide or show the empty squares. Showing the empty squares will turn the background of your puzzle black. Hiding them will result in a more minimalist appearance.
  6. Select a print template to jazz up your puzzle. If you’re creating a seasonal or holiday-themed puzzle, consider using one of our print templates to jazz it up. We have designs from Valentine’s Day to Christmas. Or if you prefer a simpler appearance, choose the ‘default’ option.
  7. Toggle between the questions and answers. Our tool includes a pre-filled answer sheet alongside each puzzle. You can toggle between these options with the ‘Puzzle’ and ‘Answer’ buttons as you build your crossword. 
  8. If desired, click the advanced options button to further personalize the appearance of your crossword. If you’d like to further customize your puzzle, click the grey ‘Advanced options’ button. This will allow you to change the background color of your puzzle, change the font color, or add a header and footer text.
  9. Download or print your puzzle. Once your puzzle is complete, use the green ‘download’ button or the grey ‘print’ button to share your puzzle with others.

Tips for Creating a Great Crossword Puzzle

Creating a crossword puzzle is easier said than done. There’s a reason newspapers pay big bucks for puzzles. Here are a few tips on how to create a great crossword puzzle:

  1. Create a theme.

A great way to keep your puzzle consistent is to create a theme. Not only will the theme help make your puzzle fun, it’ll also give your puzzle solver more to work with when trying to figure out your clues. In the professional puzzle-making world, it’s a constant challenge to come up with interesting, unique puzzle themes.

  1. Make sure the word difficulty is well-suited for your audience.

It’s key to keep your audience in mind when creating a word puzzle. If you’re creating a puzzle for second-graders, for instance, you might not want to include the word ‘ululations.’ On the other hand, if you’re doing a puzzle for college-educated players, you might not want to include words so simple as ‘loud’. Keep in mind, though, that some variety in word length and difficulty can be good for higher-level puzzles. This keeps things engaging and prevents readers from getting too frustrated.

  1. Include words of varying lengths.

It might be tempting, if you’re making a puzzle for an adult, to include only words with 10+ letters. Likewise, for kids, you might want to include only short words. But a variety of word lengths helps keep the game interesting — and also makes your puzzle look more aesthetically appealing.

  1. Don’t make every clue a stumper.

Look: I get that you want to prove to your brother or wife or friend that you’re the superior crossword puzzle solver. But if you give someone a puzzle filled solely with words that most college professors don’t know, your puzzle will be ripped up with frustration before it’s ever completed. Make sure to include at least a few easier words in each crossword puzzle, as well as a few words of medium difficulty. This will help people get a start on tackling their puzzle. It will also help them narrow down the options for the harder clues on the board.

Feedback

What do you think about our Crossword Puzzle Maker? Was this tool useful for you, or are there features you’d like to see added? We’d love to hear from you! Click the ‘feedback’ button to share your suggestions.

If you’re looking for more tools to generate classroom materials, check out the Word Finder’s Teacher’s Nook, where we have tools to help create heaps more educational content, from math worksheets to lined paper templates.